Hue Jackson: OC Todd Haley Has 'Total Autonomy' Running Browns Offense

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 5, 2018

CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 17:  Head coach Hue Jackson of the Cleveland Browns watches as his team takes on the Baltimore Ravens at FirstEnergy Stadium on December 17, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. Baltimore defeated Cleveland 27-10. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)  *** Hue Jackson
Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson said Friday new offensive coordinator Todd Haley, who he called "one of the best in the business," will have "total autonomy" running the team's offense.

Aditi Kinkhabwala of the NFL Network provided comments from Jackson, who previously handled the Browns' play-calling duties, and he made it clear Haley can implement his own scheme after arriving from the AFC North rival Pittsburgh Steelers.

Cleveland kept Jackson despite the team's 1-31 record during his two-year tenure, which includes a winless 2017 season.

While the Browns ranked a reasonable 14th in total defense last year, they came in 24th in total offense and 32nd in scoring offense.

The franchise hired Haley in January after the Steelers decided not to renew his contract. He served as Pittsburgh's offensive coordinator from 2012 through 2017, and his unit ranked in the top 10 of both yardage and scoring each of the past four seasons.

In February, Haley told reporters he forged an instant connection with Jackson and looks forward to working alongside a fellow offensive mind:

"He wasn't hesitant at all with me. We had great conversations right out of the gate. I worked for Ken Whisenhunt in Arizona who had been a play-caller. Those are all just things that you have to deal with in these positions, but I'm excited about it. Like I said, that is another guy that has been around a long time to talk to and to bounce things, ideas and thoughts off of and get information."

The Browns feature enough offensive talent, at least on paper, to make a major jump in 2018.

They acquired quarterback Tyrod Taylor from the Buffalo Bills, and he'll compete with rookie Baker Mayfield, the first overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft, for the starting job.

The winner of that competition will be surrounded by plenty of playmaking talent in running backs Carlos Hyde, Duke Johnson and Nick Chubb as well as wide receivers Josh Gordon, Jarvis Landry and Corey Coleman, and tight end David Njoku.

Haley is used to figuring out ways to share the wealth after leading a Steelers offense highlighted by running back Le'Veon Bell and wide receiver Antonio Brown, two of the game's best.

Jackson and the Browns hope that success translates as they look to rebound after a pair of dreadful seasons.

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